Music Preparation

Tom has extensive experience in music preparation, including copying, engraving, and re-orchestration. He has been preparing music for the Shaw Festival since 1998.

Originally Tom studied music calligraphy at Humber College in Toronto and used a nib and bottle of ink. These days he is skilled at the latest in music notation software, able to create beautifully laid out parts and scores using “Finale”. His original calligraphy training, and vast experience as a player, give him the knowledge to improve on the software’s default settings and create clean, easy to read music.


“No job is too small.” Tom will happily prepare everything from a simple lead sheet to a full score with all the parts.

You can expect:

  • Accuracy
  • Fast service
  • Good spacing for easy reading
  • Best possible page turn considerations
  • Courtesy accidentals (which software often omits)
  • Logical measure numbering and rehearsal letters
  • Logical page layout that reflects the “road map” of your tune
  • A reduction in wasted rehearsal time
  • Hassle free editing and error correction after your proofing

There was a time a few years ago when seeing a computer generated part on a music stand instilled fear and dread even in the most experienced of musicians. Tom's music preparation experience began in those days. With today’s software and the thousands of hours he has spent with it, he creates immaculate, accurate, easy to read scores and parts for compositions or arrangements.

Tom examines every page from the viewpoint of an experienced performer. Spacing, size, fonts, titles, articulations, placement of dynamics, and measure numbers are all carefully considered. If appropriate, suggestions in notation to improve the music’s readability will be offered. Page turn issues are always considered and the best possible solution is implemented.

Using his experience as a player, an arranger and an orchestrator, Tom will examine your creation for instrument range problems and potential harmonic issues. You will always be sent a version of your work to proof, along with any questions that he may have, before the final version is completed. All music will be sent electronically in Adobe PDF format unless otherwise desired. Where appropriate, he can assemble your music into a book, or individual instrument part books, using Adobe Acrobat.


Since 1999, Tom has done all of the music preparation for musicals produced by “The Shaw Festival” Theatre in Niagara-On-The-Lake, Canada. Broadway scores are typically completely re-orchestrated, reducing the number of instruments. He provides conductor scores and players’ individual parts for orchestras ranging from 8 to 14 players at this theatre. The 20+ shows have included Gypsy, Wonderful Town, High Society, Sunday In The Park With George, and Pal Joey.

The Shaw Festival’s Music Director Paul Sportelli has used him to prepare music for his original compositions, original musicals, orchestra concerts, recording sessions and rehearsal piano parts.

Tom has also done work for Theatre Aquarius (Hamilton, Canada), Soulpepper Theatre (Toronto, Canada), Noreen Waibel Music Inc (various locations), Galante Entertainment (Toronto, Canada), Sheridan College (Oakville, Canada) and Apmar Music Studios (Toronto, Canada).

He has prepared many piano/vocal lead sheets for auditioning actors and singers who know the importance of arriving with accurate, easily read charts in the correct key.

He has also prepared many lead sheets from the handwritten music of composers that take pride in their work and want to add a professional look to their art.

There have been many little jobs: some small ensemble work, including his own sax quartet arrangements; string quartets; cleaning up and formatting parts for composers that were running late; and adding 2 – 5 piece horn arrangements to Indie recordings.

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Website by Emily Skublics.